Filipinos have always shown value in education, ideal learning environments, and the benefits and opportunities it presents. To empower and support the OFW children, who also happen to be the “future of the country,” the Philippine government, through the Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA) and its projects, is offering financial assistance, scholarships, and grants that will help them complete their higher education.
There’s no shortage of talents in the Philippines, and with these scholarship programs, OWWA hopes to develop and grow their skills, allowing them to create the future they want. By providing financial assistance, OWWA allows its members’ qualified dependents to attain a better, brighter future.
Through these programs, OWWA enables the students to focus on their academics and develop their skills without worrying about their finances. Apart from the financial assistance, the agency hopes the youth they support will bridge the gap and help them grow and develop into competent professionals through their scholarships and grants.
List of OWWA Scholarship Programs
The best way to take full advantage of these benefits is to ensure you know what each scholarship program offers. To learn more about them, we listed the complete list of scholarship programs under the Education and Scholarship Programs from OWWA. Please check them out below:
Scholarships for Dependents
1. Education for Development Scholarship Program (EDSP)
OWWA’s Education for Development Scholarship Program (EDSP) is a scholarship grant offered by the agency to all eligible beneficiaries and dependents of active OWWA members. These eligible beneficiaries must belong to the top 400 passers of the pre-qualifying test administered by the Department of Science & Technology-Science Education Institute (DOST-SEI).
They must enroll in a four- or five-year baccalaureate course at any of their preferred colleges or universities. The grant would be given in the form of financial assistance amounting to up to ₱60,000.00 per school year.
2. Educational Livelihood Assistance Program (ELAP)
The Educational Livelihood Assistance Program is a scholarship program offered by the OWWA under the Scholarship for Dependents program. It serves as two-part assistance: an educational scholarship grant for the beneficiary or a livelihood assistance grant for the spouse. It is a program exclusively designed to support the dependents of active OWWA members who have passed away.
The scholarship grants up to ₱5000.00 for beneficiaries in elementary, ₱8,000.00 for those in high school or ₱10,000.00 for those in college. ELAP also provides business funding amounting to ₱15,000.00 to spouses of the deceased OFWs or the remaining parent of an OFW dependent as a livelihood grant.
3. OFW Dependent Scholarship Program (ODSP)
The OFW Dependent Scholarship Program (ODSP) is another scholarship available under the Scholarship for Dependents. It is one of the leading scholarship programs offered by OWWA to OFW dependents, either siblings or children, who are enrolled or planning to enroll in a four- or five-year baccalaureate degree at a state college or a university.
Under this program, the beneficiaries can only get financial assistance mounting to ₱20,000.00 per academic year if they are eligible OFW dependents of active OWWA members whose monthly salary as an OFW is not more than $600.00.
Mariners’ and Seafarers’ Educational Programs
4. Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (Bridging) Program (MDA)
Yet another education and training support offered by OWWA is the Mariner’s Dugtong Aral (MDA) Program. The MDA is a bridging scholarship program for selected engineering students aspiring to be mariners looking to become marine officers on board an ocean vessel.
In particular, this program is reserved for those who are qualified graduates of BS Mechanical Engineering and BS Electrical Engineering, studying for a course leading to a BS Marine Engineering degree. Under this program, beneficiaries of the MDA can get a maximum of ₱38,120.00 plus ₱15,000.00 for a 3-month stipend.
5. OWWA Seafarers’ Upgrading Program (SUP)
To help upgrade active seafarers’ skills so they may cope with technological advances and international maritime standards, OWWA offers yet another scholarship in the form of the OWWA Seafarers’ Upgrading Program (SUP).
Under this program, the seafarer-applicant or grantee can select and enroll in any MARINA- or TESDA-accredited training or course from a list of OWWA-approved training or course providers. Note that all MARINA-accredited training centers are recognized as OWWA-approved training providers. The grantees are entitled to financial support ranging from a minimum of ₱1,200.00 to a maximum of ₱7,500.00.
Short-Term Training Programs for OFWs & Dependents
6. Skills for Employment Scholarship Program (SESP)
The Skills for Employment Scholarship Program (SESP) is an education and training project pioneered by OWWA so eligible candidates can upgrade their skills in the technical-vocational (Tech-VOC) field. The project aims to nurture the employees’ skills by giving them access to career-enhancing courses that last anywhere from six months to a year.
For the course’s duration, grant recipients taking one-year technical courses will receive the total cost of the course up to ₱14,000 in financial aid, while those on a six-month vocational course will receive ₱7,250. The funds will be disbursed to the training institute where the OWWA dependents or beneficiaries are enrolled.
7. Information Technology (IT) Training Program
The Information Technology (IT) Training Program is a basic literacy program pioneered by OWWA and designed to upgrade the IT skills of OFWs and their families. It was initially devised to set up IT Training centers in OWWA Regional Offices and other overseas posts.
Later, the program evolved to include training and teaching IT applications to upgrade the skills and knowledge of OFWs and dependents to help them improve their employability.
8. Pre-Departure Education Program
Before OFWs can leave the country for deployment, they must complete pre-departure training programs in the form of Country-Specific Pre-Departure Orientation Seminar (PDOS) and Comprehensive Pre-Departure Education Program (CPDEP).
Under this program, would-be OFWs must complete PDOS, a one-day orientation regarding their future country and work environment. For OFWs who are set to work as domestic helpers, they need to take a four- to six-day CPDEP, which covers training related to language, culture familiarization, and stress management.
Special Education Scholarships
Some of the scholarship programs offered by the Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA) were launched during the COVID-19 pandemic crisis:
9. Educational Assistance through Scholarship in Emergencies (Project EASE)
The Educational Assistance through Scholarship in Emergencies (Project EASE) is an educational assistance program initiated by the Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA).
Through this project, qualified dependents of active OFW-members who were repatriated during the pandemic, including children of married or single parent OFW or siblings of single OFW, can receive educational assistance amounting to ₱10,000.00 per year for a maximum of four years to cover for their college-level education.
10. Tertiary Education Subsidy for Dependents of Repatriated OFWs (Tabang OFW Program)
The Tertiary Education Subsidy for Dependents of Repatriated OFWs (Tabang OFW Program) is a special educational assistance program initiated by the OWWA in collaboration with the Department of Labor and Employment (DOLE) and the Commission on Higher Education (CHED).
This Tertiary Education Subsidy (TES) is intended to benefit one (1) college-level dependent OFWs who were repatriated or displaced during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The program offers a one-time grant amounting to ₱30,000.00 to an unmarried child of married OFWs or an unmarried child, sibling, nephew, or niece of an unmarried OFW under 30 years of age.
11. Tuloy-Aral Project (TAP)
The Tuloy-Aral Project (TAP) was launched in December 2004 to offer educational assistance to the less fortunate children of former OFWs and children belonging to poor, needy families.
With the help of the Philippine Overseas Labor Offices (POLO) and the OWWA Family Welfare Officers, the project takes a two-step approach: One, to identify successful OFWs and other organizations to provide $100.00 in the form of financial support as donor volunteers, and two, to shoulder the school expenses of elementary and high school level child-beneficiaries belonging to the marginalized sectors of society.
How to Become an OWWA Scholar?
Being an OFW or an OFW dependent doesn’t automatically make you a qualified OWWA scholar. It would be best if you were either an OFW with active OWWA membership or a beneficiary or dependent of an active OWWA member.
You are also required to meet specific requirements and qualifications based on each scholarship program offered by the OWWA along with the Commission on Higher Education (CHED), Unified Student Financial Assistance System for Tertiary Education (UniFAST), or Technical Education & Skills Development Authority (TESDA).
The OWWA scholar is carefully subjected to a stringent selection process and accreditation of participating organizations. However, any OWWA member or dependent may apply for scholarships and education training programs for himself or her duly designated beneficiary.
Video: CNN Philippines Discusses Education Programs and Training by OWWA
Check out this video below which features the OWWA scholarship programs. CNN Philippines talks to Hans Leo Cacdac, OWWA Admin, as he talks about the different programs and opportunities for OFWs and their families as well as the requirements. Check out the clip:
This article lists all the currently available training programs and educational scholarship projects pioneered by OWWA for active OWWA members, OFWs, their families, and eligible dependents. Some are regular projects, while others are projects created under special situations and funding availability.
These projects are all available on the OWWA website. They are open for application, provided that the OFWs and their beneficiaries stay as active members by paying their membership dues amounting to $25.00 for every two (2) years.
OWWA memberships aren’t just about scholarships and training benefits; it’s more about protecting the rights and welfare of their member OFWs and their families in whatever way possible. As a member of OWWA, it is always good to know that there are many programs launched to help OFWs and their dependents live a better, brighter future.
For inquiries, concerns, or problems regarding the OWWA scholarships and education programs, you may also reach out to OWWA through the following:
Overseas Workers Welfare Association (OWWA)
Office Address: F.B. Harrison St, Pasay, Metro Manila
Tel. No.: 8891-7601 to 24
OWWA hotline number: 1348, (02) 1348 (Regional), (+632) 1348 (International)
OWWA Email Address: firstname.lastname@example.org
OWWA Facebook page: https://web.facebook.com/OWWAofficial
OWWA website: https://owwa.gov.ph/